Tag Archives: Winnipeg

Dark, cloudie and cold…Tuesday, March 11, 1913

Today was dark and cloudie

Today was dark and cloudie

Today was dark cloudie and cold with a little snow fall. Cullerne and I in the car all alone. We did nothing all morning
In the afternoon I copied a few notes. After supper Arthur came over too the car to fix his album
staz till 9:30 then I went to bed.

I don’t know about you, but it seems that there are a lot of days when they “stay in the car all day”. How did they ever build the Grand Truck Pacific Railway? I imagine that things will pick up as we move into the spring.

Sunday, March 2, 1913

Near Edmonton, Alberta, Lest We Forget Sunday, March 2, 1913

Near Edmonton, Alberta, Lest We Forget Sunday, March 2, 1913

Weather dark and cloudy all day but warm. I was all alone in the car all day. I started to wash about 9 oclock and finished about 3 oclock

After that I work on my album till supper time

After that Arthur and I went to church

And here’s another shot from “The Album”…by the way, this is the first time he mentions the album, which I assume is the photo album that contains the pictures that I’ve been putting up here occasionally.Clem Dickson Album (10)

February 28, 1913 “Lest We Forget”

Now, I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again: This diary can be excruciatlingly BORING!! Aside from the nostalgic value to me or maybe it’s the historical value from a family history standpoint, it’s interesting. Interesting enough to take the time to post these blogs, anyway!! Clem died in 1955 at age 67. I was only about 2 1/2 at the time and my memory of him is more from the pictures that I’ve seen of him with my grandmother, or the picture of him holding me outside the house at 32-34 Tyler Street in Springfield, Massahcusetts. (That reminds me, I should track that one down and scan it for the blog) And, of course, this diary which is 100 years old this year! So for me, that’s where he lives…in the photos and this diary. In that respect, this diary is important to me, and I hope that some of the readers can get at least a little something out of it!

"LEST WE FORGET" February 28, 1913

“LEST WE FORGET” February 28, 1913

Weather a little colder with a little snow. Cullerne and Steve went to town on the 1:30 AM. Steve left for Seattle.

I stay in the car and over in the office all day.

Wednesday, February 26, 1913 “Lest We Forget”

"Lest We Forget" Wednesday, February 1913

“Lest We Forget” Wednesday, February 1913

Weather a little warmer The three of us stayed in the car all morning Cullerne working on a gravel Pit note Steve copyed note: I had a chance

In the afternoon I helped Steve to copy notes and check them

February 8, 2013? 3 feet of snow…. February 8, 1913?

It’s Friday, February 8, 2013 and we’re getting up to 3 feet of snow. What did the weather bring 100 years ago on Saturday, February 8, 1913? As usual, Clem always gives us a brief weather report:

We got up at 6:30 weather very nice a little cold till the sun came up and then it was warmer. Steve and I left Otley for Edson at 8:15 and walked all the way 27 miles arrived at Edson at 5 o”clock a little tired.
Cullerne came in with the outfit on the local from Otley got here about 10:15 then Steve and I went to dreamland.

Edson, Welcome to

Edson Joseph Chamberlin, President of the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway.  He took over from Charles Melville Hays who died in the RMS Titanic. disaster

Edson Joseph Chamberlin, President of the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway. He took over from Charles Melville Hays who died in the RMS Titanic disaster

Although I can’t find a listing for Otley, there is a description of Edson, Alberta in Wikipedia [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edson,_Alberta] once again, mentioning an executive of the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway:

The town was originally named Heatherwood, but the name was changed around 1911 in honour of Edson Joseph Chamberlin, vice-president of the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway. Local history maintains that Edson (Heatherwood) was built in its current location because it was the first level spot after Wolf Creek. (The land at Wolf Creek was quickly bought up after the announcement of plans to develop a town there, which rendered it uneconomical for the railway.) When Edson was declared the local rail centre, smaller communities such as Rosevear (abandoned), Wolf Creek, Carrot Creek and Niton Junction fell into a decline that continues today. In the 1950s, upgrading of Highway 16 caused a dramatic increase in private, commercial and industrial traffic. Today, the Yellowhead Highway carries some of the heaviest traffic flow in Alberta and has been officially declared the second Trans-Canada Highway.


So it sounds like there were a few areas Like Rosevear that were abandodned. Otley must have been one of them! It was certainly there in 1913…Clem Dickson walked there with Steve!!!

Alberta, Canada…Grand Trunk Pacific Railway…February 7, 1913

From “Lest We Forget”, Clem Dickson’s diary entry for February 7, 1913:

Weather a little milder with sun shine all day. Steve and I took the Local from Otley to Leaman and walked from Leaman to Otley 15 miles. We got in about 4:30. We sat around the fire till supper. After supper I went out and had to cut some wood for the next day. Went to bed at 8:30 because we had a long walk.

[I can’t find any contemporary reference for Otley but Leaman is a “populated locality” in Yellowhead County, Alberta.]

More “Clem” news on the Grand Trunk Pacific—January 4, 1913

From “Lest We Forget”, here’s my grandfather’s entry in his diary from Tuesday, January 4, 1913:

The weather is about the same 20 [degrees] below. We did not go out to work today because we had run out of coal and Steve and I had to look around for wood. Cullerne went to Carval and told us to get some wood. We asked he sec. man where we could get some and he told us he had some already cut. We went over and got it and told Cullerne that we had a hard time getting the wood.

First, telling his boss he had a hard time getting the wood strikes me as my grandfather’s wry sense of humor. Instead of being tasked with chopping down trees with Steve, they just had to walk a little and pick it up from a pile of wood ready to burn!

Second, I have to tell you that I couldn’t find the HDMI cable to hook up Karen’s laptop to the flat screen. I was a little cranked about that. I finally tracked it down. Someone (me) had wrapped it up and put it in my carrying case to take with me to the next class at the Hitchcock Free Academy in Brimfield, MA. More on that later…I’ll only have 4 or 5 students this go-around… No problem with that, I like small “cozy” classes! But when I read that my grandfather couldn’t work because they didn’t have any coal, it was too cold to work and their boss told them to go out and “get some wood”…kinda put things into perspective for me!

At least I haven’t lost the remote in the past few days…

This old wagon at the Carvel General Store in Carvel may have been around when Clem was up there 100 years ago!

This old wagon may have been around at the Carvel General Store when Clem was up there 100 years ago!

Here’s a link to the Carvel General Store: http://www.carvelgeneralstore.ca/about-us.html

a cold morning in Alberta! February 3, 1913 “Lest We Forget”

Today I start transcribing again. The past few weeks had already been transcribed so posting was as simple as a copy/paste with a few comments. Here are the comments from the January 3rd entry, one hundred years ago!

Monday, February 3, 1913
We got up at 6 30 and the weather was much colder than Sunday. After breakfast and I got ready to go to Lemon on the rail change notes. We left at 9 30 and got to Lemon at 12 oclock sharp and had dinner. We did not start back till about 2 oclock because we did not want to get to early we would make the walks longer. We thought 22 miles iwas enough for one day. We got back about 4 00

Well, there you go! Walk 22 miles round trip for dinner??? In January??? In the CANADIAN WILDERNESS!!! And we worry about getting a parking spot right outside the entrance to the mall so we can wander around in a temperature controlled environment! I’ll be honest, I’ll take the mall over a walk in the woods to a place called “Lemon”….

February 2, 1913—Do They “Celebrate” Groundhogs Day in Canada???

Here’s the last page that I’ve transcribed ahead of time. Starting tomorrow, I’ll be transcribing directly from Clem Dickson’s diary, “Lest We Forget”. It’s getting pretty fragile so I hope I can work with it without causing any additional wear and tear.

Sunday, February 2, 1913

We did not get up till 830 this morning. Our morning to sleep. We had breakfast in Jenkins. Then the day’s work starts.

By the way, Karen and I went to a fundraiser at First Church in Ludlow this morning called “Ice Cream for Breakfast.” This a “really?” moment: Ice cream for breakfast? REALLY?!?!? The place was MOBBED!!! I think this will catch on….go figure!

And yes, “First Church in Ludlow” was the first church in Ludlow, MA. It was established in 1774 and the first minister was a guy named Pelatiah Chapin. By an outrageous coincidence, Rev Pelatiah turns out to be an early cousin of mine, a few times removed, of course! More on that in another post…it gets sorta interesting!

Grand Trunk Pacific Railway January 30 and 31, 1913

Missed yesterday….Sorry! Getting behind in a few areas and I need to get caught up. Here are yesterday’s and today’s diary entries from my grandfather, Clem Dickson, as he worked the construction crews building the short lived Grand Trunk Pacific Railway:

Thursday, January 30, 1913

Today is the same as yesterday with a little more snow and a little warmer. We were to go east today but the snow did not let up and Cullerne feeling blue because we had to stay in. He made us work. Steve was copying notes all day. I (hunge?) two axes all day at it

Friday, January 31, 1913

Snow all day so that we could not go out to work. Cullerne was raising cane all day because he could not work.
About 4.30 Cullerne got word not to run in spine (?) and to move to Junkin on saturday that was ok for us.